"Fears Rise That Economy May Falter in the Spring"; "Economic Reports Fan Fears": Both the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal are going real big today on the surprising news that the economy might not be "good" over the next few months. Oh noes! What did we know and when did we know it!?
Well, on April 11th, Goldman Sachs published a U.S. Daily report headlined "A Road Map for Sluggish Q2 Growth," which said pretty much the same thing, well in advance of the job numbers released yesterday: "After months of stronger-than-expected data, the US economy has started to lose momentum." They also cite [...]
Today's New York City Groupon offering is a 50% discount at Housing Works' nonprofit thrift stores, which raise money to assist people living with HIV. For $20, you can receive $40 worth of things! Oh, just FYI: "A pair of designer shoes that sells for $40 in one of our stores provides ten days worth of hot meals for a homeless HIV+ mother and her child." Enjoy your discount. :(
A long time ago I was involved in an attempt to finance the buyout of a card club in LA. It was quite a profitable business, doing about $100 million a year in revenues, on which it cleared close to $30 million after cash expenses. They made their money by charging people to sit at a table and play poker, taking a little piece of each hand. That way they could get away with not being a gambling establishment, which would have been illegal in Los Angeles, because they weren't actually a participant in the game; they were just a venue where people happened to sit down and play [...]
The economy is terrible right now. Almost everybody seems to agree. The business community, as represented by the US Chamber of Commerce, the Business Roundtable and most Republicans, has some ideas as to how to fix it: cut taxes; reduce the deficit (!); rein in Big Government spending (except defense); stop over-regulating business so they can get on with business. The Democrats have their own idea: more stimulus, in the form of, for example, extending unemployment benefits. Who's right? If anybody?
"This recovery is going to look like the Nike swoosh." -Timken Company CEO Jim Griffith, who pontificated about his "hopeful but cautious" outlook for the American economy to Reuters. Griffith, whose company manufactures bearings and alloy steels and other associated items, was referring to the "gentle curve" presented by the omnipresent logo. But really, why not take this idea further and have Nike (current market cap: somewhere in the $37 billion range) lead the way in recovery-related investments — and then brand the effort with their trademark swoosh? It would make for some great brand association, not to mention that it would boost consumer confidence like nobody's [...]
Tough times for Bertelsmann, owner of (among other things) Random House: "Anyone seeking a summary of the publishing industry's woes needs look no further than first-half results from Bertelsmann. The privately held German group's swing to a Ã¢â€šÂ¬333m net loss in the six months to June reflects both this year's steep advertising downturn and the longer-term structural shift under way in the media business, as companies grapple with fragmenting audiences and the changing economics of the digital age. Rivals could be forgiven for wincing as Europe's biggest publisher warned that a Ã¢â€šÂ¬900m cost-cutting drive may not be enough to prevent a full-year net loss."
The next line, if [...]